The Indians' Last Fight
Excerpt: ...estimated by competent judges to contain about fifteen hundred square miles of territory. It was the grazing ground in 1870 for about three million buffalo. The fighting forces of the Indians roaming that huge tract of country at the time was approximately six thousand, five hundred men of different tribes, not to say anything about the number of squaws who followed in their wake dealing death to the cripples and mutilating the dead. At that time, each lodge had on an average of about 125 or 150 ponies for use in their raids. Taking all these things into consideration, one must come to the conclusion that there was a formidable force to contend with, especially as the Indian mode of fighting was not governed by the laws of civilized warfare. To protect the settlers from the destructive raids of these tribes, the Government had erected a line of forts manned with an insufficient force for the work at Pg 169 hand. The list of such forts comprised, Ft. Hays, Ft. Wallace, Ft. Harker, Ft. Larned, Ft. Dodge, Camp Supply, and Ft. Elliot. As I said, they were poorly garrisoned, as the best men they had, had been called away to fill vacancies in the regiments used in the Civil war, and their places were supplied by raw recruits, or old soldiers who had re-enlisted for want of something else to do. To add to their inefficiency in Indian warfare, they knew nothing of the topography of the country in which they were expected to serve. One can imagine what a predicament they would be in on the first occasion of their engagement with the natives of the plains, and an example will be shown presently. I do not wish my reader to think for a moment that I want to say anything derogatory of the valor of the American soldier. His reputation for bravery established on scores of battle fields, is too well founded to be shaken by anything I might say to the contrary. But this I will venture to state, namely, that when he came face to face with the Indian mode of warfare...
- 189 x 246 x 5mm | 195g
- 13 Sep 2013
- Illustrations, black and white